What are the treatment options for basal cell carcinoma (BCC)?

Updated: Mar 02, 2020
  • Author: Robert S Bader, MD; Chief Editor: William D James, MD  more...
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According to the National Comprehensive Cancer Network (NCCN), the goal of treatment for basal cell carcinoma (BCC) is elimination of the tumor with maximal preservation of function and physical appearance. As such, treatment decisions should be individualized according to the patient's particular risk factors and preferences. [7]

In nearly all cases of BCC, the recommended treatment modality is surgery. [68, 7, 6] The surgical approach varies according to tumor size, depth, and location. Dermatologists may perform nearly all of the therapeutic options in an outpatient setting. Most therapies are well established and widely applied; nevertheless, researchers are studying some additional options (eg, photodynamic therapy with photosensitizers). [69, 70, 71]

Local therapy with chemotherapeutic and immune-modulating agents is useful in some cases of BCC. In particular, small and superficial BCC may respond to these compounds.

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